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This is what I hope to be the last revision of my homebrew otherworldly patron, the Supernatural. (My previous two revisions can be found here: version 1, and version 2.)

The Supernatural

You have struck a pact with a great supernatural being, a great lord over the chaotic Undead. The Supernatural rarely make these alliances with the living, but those who do tire of only ruling over the dead and long for the world of the living. You could have been found yourself in the service of a rather ambitious Lich or Demilich, such as Acererak, or a powerful Vampire, perhaps even the mysterious Artor Morlin, or Shyressa. Perhaps your patron is a powerful ghost of a lost adventurer who has come back to share their wealth of knowledge.

This patron is the direct byproduct of me wanting a warlock with more flavor and diversity of who could be the patron. I hope that this is balanced against the other subclasses of Warlocks.

Here we go...Level 1

Expanded Spell List

  • 1st level: Ray of Sickness, False Life
  • 2nd level: See Invisibility, Blur
  • 3rd level: Life Transferrence, Feign Death
  • 4th level: Locate Creature, Evard's Black Tentacles
  • 5th level: Telekinesis, Contagion

Unnatural Aura

At first level, creatures sense an unnatural air about you. You are proficient with Intimidation checks, and can deal a collective 1d6 damage to creatures within 10 ft. of you as a bonus action. At 6th, 10th, and 14th level, the damage increases by 1d6. The damage type is linked to your Supernatural Path that you also take at first level.

This feature has probably changed the most since me first making this subclass without completely being replaced. Autohit d6s places this ability at about the strength of a cantrip, albeit a bit stronger, and with a complex AoE. The damage relies on the path you take at first level, which can make it deal Necrotic, Cold, or Psychic damage. Oh, and I removed the limited use of it, as the damage is not overwhelming anymore :).

  • Path of the Blix: When you kill a creature, you may regain HP up to the creature's number of hit dice. Your damage type for Unnatural Aura is Necrotic.

Unlike the Fiend's first level ability, this does not grant temporary HP but heals you actual HP. Its effect varies on the strength of your opponent, which I see as more balanced than Dark One's Blessing (you could kill 1 rat for temp. HP).

  • Path of the Skeleton: You may reduce damage by 1d8 plus your Warlock level that you take from a single source as a reaction. Once you use this feature, you cannot use it again until you complete a short or long rest. Your damage type for Unnatural Aura is Cold.

Great defense, as most of the Zombie-based middle options of this subclass are. Cold damage is the worst damage option, though (lots of monsters have resistance).

  • Path of the Ghost: As an action, you may become invisible until the end of your next turn. You may use this feature a number of times equal to your Charisma modifier (minimum 1) before completing a short or long rest. Your damage type for Unnatural Aura is Psychic.

Hands-down the best damage type for Unnatural Aura, as only one monster from the MM is resistant and ten immune (see here). An okay sneaky option.

That wraps it up for level 1. A cantrip-like effect, a proficiency, and a varying third option. Here comes level 6:

Monstrous Power

At 6th level, you may choose a Monstrous Power.

  • Powers of the Vampire: You are always under the effects of Spider Climb and cannot be seen by Truesight or divination magic.

In earlier versions, the Vampire strangely had a flight feature and an AC penalty for being in sunlight. I eliminated this and added a classic Vampire feature. Nice feature for those that are indoors a lot.

  • Powers of the Zombie: When you are hit by a melee attack, you may use your reaction to use your Unnatural Aura. To do this, you cannot have used your Unnatural Aura this round.

Very solid defense option, though you should use your Unnatural Aura sparingly on your turns.

  • Powers of the Spectre: As an action, you may become intangible for 1 minute. While intangible, you may move through objects and other creatures' positions as if they were difficult terrain (though you cannot end your turn there), and you cannot be hit by opportunity attacks. Once you use this feature, you cannot use it again until you complete a short or long rest.

Absolutely fantastic for scouting. Oh, look. A great big wall. I'll...GO THROUGH IT!!!! BWAHAHAHA! DMs beware...

This was way more unbalanced last version, so I completely revamped it.

Of course, the 10th level feature:

Supernatural Sense

At 10th level, you are incredibly aware of what is happening at any given moment. You cannot be surprised or frightened, and are always under the effect of the Detect Good and Evil spell. Additionally, when you use your Unnatural Aura and deal damage to only one creature with it, that creature makes a Wisdom saving throw or is frightened of you for 1 minute.

What's a scary undead-controlling guy look like when he's frightened? Not so scary anymore, right? They're much better suited for scaring others...

And now, the final features at 14th level:

Undead Legacy

At 14th level, you may choose an Undead Legacy.

  • The Count's Legacy: Your cantrips and Unnatural Aura drain energy from your enemies. When you damage enemies using a cantrip or Unnatural Aura, you gain temporary hit points equal to the total damage you dealt with them on your turn for 1 hour.

To clarify, this damage is equal to all the damage you did on your turn with your scary Eldritch Blast and Unnatural Aura. This makes for some great temp. HP.

  • The Lich's Legacy: As a bonus action, you point to a creature that has died within the last round that has a number of Hit Dice equal or lesser than your own. That creature regains hit points equal to their number of Hit Dice. You control this creature (who has its own turns) for one hour, after which it returns to life with its current HP. Once you use this feature, you cannot use it again until you complete a short or long rest.

Before revision, this could've been used to revive a Tarrasque as your slave for 1 hour. I obviously changed that...very good for taking control of boss monsters and reviving your friends alike.

  • The Wraith's Legacy: When you deal damage to a creature, their hit point maximum is reduced by the damage you deal until they finish a long rest. Additionally, if you kill a humanoid, it becomes a Specter under your command, as long as you have room to control more Specters. You may have a number of Specters under your control equal to your Charisma modifier (minimum of one) at a time.

Almost word-for-word what a Wraith does. That scary regenerating boss monster getting on your nerves? Say good-bye to his huge HP maximum and hello to an army of Specters.

That is all for (hopefully) the final and balanced version of the Supernatural Otherworldly Patron. I still welcome criticism, and especially appreciate commentary on how balanced this is with the other subclasses!

If you think this is balanced, please tell me! If you don't... please at least leave a answer telling me why.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation largely about truesight has been moved to chat. \$\endgroup\$ – nitsua60 Apr 22 at 0:29
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    \$\begingroup\$ At this point I'm pretty sure you're aware that we prefer you post new iterations separately rather than making edits that specifically invalidate existing answers. \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Apr 23 at 2:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ I have been told by many that downvote me to directly edit my post, so this might be nice to tell them that. \$\endgroup\$ – TheCentaur Apr 23 at 11:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ @TheCentaur once an answer has been posted, it's unfair to the respondent to revise the question in such a way that invalidates their answer. Were you in the process of editing and formatting a question to lift a hold, that would be different and edits would be appropriate. But it's never appropriate to invalidate the effort of respondents' answers via edits. Remember, SE is not a forum, we just do Q&A here. \$\endgroup\$ – Pyrotechnical Apr 23 at 12:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ Of course, I was simply attempting to inform you of some commentees who thought otherwise in the above comment. \$\endgroup\$ – TheCentaur Apr 23 at 20:12
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Point by point:

1st Level Features

  • Unnatural Aura

I don't know what 'collective 1d6 damage' means. Do you mean that can deal 1d6 damage to everyone within 10' or that you roll 1d6 and apply the damage however you want to creatures within 10'? I still think the at-will nature of this to be overpowered as it is essentially free damage you can deal at anytime and the fact that it's power is on-par with a cantrip (which it isn't, because it's growth would be levels 1, 5, 11, and 17 if it were) just means that it's free extra damage for your Bonus Action every turn. Sorcerer's spend sorcery points to do that, Barbarian's on elemental paths spend rages, melee combatants give up a shield to make off-hand attacks; this seems to break that mold.

Previous arguments about Warlocks being poor at melee ignore the whole Pact of the Blade option, which can work. It's not the optimal choice, but it's not a suicide mission as some might think.

As written, this is unbalanced - too strong.

  • Path of Blix

You've compared this to the Fiend's ability, but the Fiend's ability are temp HP and these are real healing. Temp HP does not stack with itself, but as this is written, you could pull out a jar of maggots and smush them all to heal yourself to full.

As written, this is unbalanced - too strong

  • Path of Skeleton

I don't have a problem with this per se, I'm just curious why skeleton is being considered a comparable source for a damage reduction. In 5e, skeletons are vulnerable to bludgeoning and have no special damage resistance otherwise.

As written, I don't have issues with it besides flavor.

  • Path of the Ghost

As written, this seems a crazy good way to trigger Unnatural Aura with minimal retribution. Turn invisible with my Action, wade into a bunch of enemies, trigger Unnatural Aura with my Bonus Action and walk away. Furthermore, I'll be using a broadly effective damage type to do so.

As written, this is unbalanced - too strong

6th Level Features

  • Powers of the Vampire

You state that you added a classic vampire feature in the form of blocking essentially all divination magic. Is there a reason you didn't simply state that the creature is always under the effects of the Nondetection spell? Bear in mind, always being under spider climb or nondetection is the sort of thing that typically requires an attunement slot to achieve or very high level class features. You've given both of those features as a 6th level feature.

As written, this is unbalanced - too strong

  • Powers of the Zombie

As written, this seems to be intended to disincentivize using your Unnatural Aura when it's your turn (which you've noted). I think if you're intending to make a feature, make it something that lets someone do something they couldn't have done before they gained the feature.

As written, this is unbalanced - too weak

  • Powers of the Spectre

What does intangible mean? This may seem like a silly question, but you haven't actually used a game term and so how players and DMs use this is very poorly defined. Do you mean they can use the Incorporeal Movement feature that Ghosts have? If so, say that. Do you mean the character can step into the Ethereal Plane? If so, say that. Creating your own terminology means every table interprets what you mean differently and has different balance issues as a result.

As written, this is unclear.

10th Level Feature

As written, you've indicated that a character is always under the effects of a spell that requires concentration and not removed that requirement. Typically this is handled by letting the Warlock cast the spell at will. Another issue is that you've permitted the Warlock to force a creature to make multiple saves against an effect that will frighten them without limit; straight up that's broken. Even a dragon's frightful presence won't work on any creature more than once a day once the target saves.

As written, this is unbalanced - too strong

14th Level Features

  • Count's Legacy

I'm going to take this feature to its natural conclusion: 17th level. Wherein you deal 4d10 damage with Eldritch Blast and another 4d6 damage with Unnatural Aura. That's 36 temporary HP you are gaining every turn. Other casters might not see such mileage, but Warlocks are all about cantrip damage. Barring a bunch of enemies focus firing on you, you are going to be exceedingly hard to bring down. And that 36 damage assumes only 1 enemy, so unless that enemy is a dragon, you would be able to weather some insane things.

As written, this is unbalanced - too strong

  • The Lich's Legacy

This is a combination of both crazy strong and weak at the same time, which isn't usually a good combo. For example, let's say the creature you target has 20 hit dice; that's the number of hit points they'll come back with. So they'll be back on the ground pretty fast considering the level they're probably playing at. Conversely, you've taken total control over a very strong creature. At 19th level, you could take control of an Adult Red Dragon.

I like the idea of quickly rezzing something, but this follows no previous conventions. I'd recommend modifying it to just be you can drop a free Resurrection on a creature that died within the last round without the material components. No frills, just boom, insta-resurrection for your buddy. Maybe get fancy with True Resurrection if you want to eliminate the post revival penalties.

As written, this is unbalanced - too strong

  • The Wraith's Legacy

Oh hell no. The PHB has one spell that I could find in a quick search that reduces hit point maximum, the 6th level spell Harm. The only thing in the PHB that I know that gives you long-term control of undead is the Wizard Necromancer's Command Undead feature and that is limited to 1 at a time, with heavy restrictions on intelligent undead. As written, you've completely obliterated that class feature.

As written, this is unbalanced - too strong

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Apr 23 at 21:13

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